Season 05 Archives

WE 5.1: Third Person Limited

We’ve talked about point of view before, but only in general terms: this time we delve into third-person limited in detail, explaining how to use it and when to use it and why. We apologize for the lateness of the post, and the lameness of this episode description: this is what happens when all three … Continue reading WE 5.1: Third Person Limited

WE 5.2: Character Quirks

Special guest Bree Despain of the Dark Divine trilogy joins us for a ‘cast on character quirks. A character quirk, avoiding the tautological definition, is something that makes your character memorable. We talk about good quirks, bad quirks, and how to tell the difference. We also laugh a lot because it was late and we were … Continue reading WE 5.2: Character Quirks

Writing Excuses 5.7: Avoiding Melodrama

Melodrama. What is it? What do people mean when they say something is too melodramatic? Usually they do NOT mean “it’s too much like a classical melodrama,” but it helps if we start with that definition: a melodrama is a story in which each character only expresses one emotion, and/or only has one trait. When … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.7: Avoiding Melodrama

Writing Excuses 5.9: Character Arcs

John Brown joins us this week for a discussion of plot threads specific to characters. These can be the main plot thread, interesting sub-plots, or just things that shape characters. Sometimes they’re things we do deliberately, and sometimes we discovery-write our way into these arcs. We talk about how we do this, and how we … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.9: Character Arcs

Writing Excuses 5.10: John Brown and the Creative Process

The now cancer-free John Brown joins us again, this time for a discussion of the creative process. John has presented a seminar on this subject in the past, the focus of which is to teach people to unlock their creativity. At the core of this is the problem-solving we all engage in at some point. You … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.10: John Brown and the Creative Process

Writing Excuses 5.16: Critiquing Dan’s First Novel

Late last season we took a look at Brandon’s first novel and did some line-editing and critiquing. It was so much fun we decided that Dan needed to take a turn in the dunking booth. He totally gets wet. In the course of dunking Dan we cover beginnings, descriptions, character development, pacing, and viewpoint as … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.16: Critiquing Dan’s First Novel

Writing Excuses 5.23: Life Day!

Mary Robinette Kowal and Dave Wolverton again join Dan and Howard, and this time we’re talking about holidays in fantasy and science-fiction. This ‘cast was recorded at Superstars Writing Seminars, and  Moses Siregar III of Adventures in Sci-Fi Publishing captured us on video as we recorded. What sorts of things result in holidays? Historically we … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.23: Life Day!

Writing Excuses 5.31: Writing Romance

Sarah Eden and Robison Wells join Dan and Howard at LTUE to talk about writing romance. Sarah writes in the romance genre, but we’re not focusing on the genre — we’re talking about writing romance within the context of whatever else we might happen to be putting on the page. We lead with how to … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.31: Writing Romance

Writing Excuses 5.32: Urban Fantasy

We begin our discussion of Urban Fantasy with a discussion of definitions, which quickly devolves into an argument over what we are actually supposed to be talking about. Moving right along, we explore what sorts of things we find in an Urban Fantasy, and what sorts of rules these stories usually abide by. Dan tells … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.32: Urban Fantasy

Writing Excuses 5.34: Story Bibles

Let’s talk about bibles. Specifically, story bibles. What are they, why do we use them, why might we NOT use them, and what tools are working for us? Howard again plugs wikidpad, which he converted Brandon to, and which Dan Wells just couldn’t bring himself to love. Dan uses several different Open Office files. The … Continue reading Writing Excuses 5.34: Story Bibles